Senior Financial Abuse in the Movie "Say Anything"

Let’s take a look at what our Raleigh personal injury lawyers think about senior financial abuse in the plot of 1980s movie Say Anything, starring John Cusack and Ione Skye.

What negligence caused wrongdoing to an innocent person? The film follows two teenagers about to graduate high school, Lloyd and Diane. Diane’s father, Jim, operates an assisted living center for senior citizens and Diane works there part-time. Throughout the film, Internal Revenue Service agents visit and request copies of the center’s financial records. Later, it’s revealed Jim was committing tax violations and funneling funds out of the senior citizens’ bank accounts and into his own.

What senior financial abuse and negligence occurred? As the owner of a nursing home, Jim’s responsibility should have been the preservation of the residents’ well-being. Instead, he took advantage of the elderly people relying on his care and evaded taxes.

If the staff at his nursing home was aware of Jim’s negligent actions, they could be found guilty of conspiracy and other criminal charges if they were receiving compensation from him. As far as personal injury liability, if evidence were to show that the staff was withholding medications from residents to try and reduce their inventory costs, even further damages could be sought.

What would happen in a real-life nursing home fraud case? Cases of senior financial abuse happen more often than most people realize. Over 2 million cases of elder abuse are reported annually, and 1 in 5 cases go unreported. In the beginning of the above clip from Say Anything, Lloyd visits Jim in prison where Jim is serving time for negligence. Every year nursing homes are found guilty of financial abuse, and here are two examples of North Carolina elder abuse and senior financial abuse:

A former caretaker returned to an elderly man's house, beat him and then robbed him in this Kenly, NC elder abuse case.

Sometimes assisted living or nursing home centers are not the forces behind elder abuse; there are many cases where family members have turned on their own relatives and committed financial fraud. A real senior financial abuse case awarded an elderly woman $40,000 of $70,000 her daughter spent after her daughter requested access to bank accounts to help care for her mother’s uncle. Instead of helping her elderly mother and uncle, the daughter abused her access to the bank accounts and spent the money on her own will.

Read our warning signs of senior financial abuse to help prevent your loved ones from being taken advantage of during their older and more vulnerable years. Then, learn our tips on how to talk to aging parents about nursing home abuse.

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